ARMER 800 MHZ Radio Training originally scheduled for Sunday afternoon, April 13, at the SEOC, is cancelled due to conflicts for the SEOC building. This training is expected to be rescheduled in May. Watch this web site for the new date. KA0HYR
A BUILD DAY for ARES Members is CANCELED for this year. The snow will not enable us test the NVIS antenna. The battery boxes have turned out to be more expensive than originally thought. The result of all of this is that more planning is needed. So, your understanding is greatly appreciated. If any one is still interested in an aluminum "drive-on" mast stand, please contact KA0HYR directly. 73's !!
ARES members attended the meeting on March 3rd at Woodwinds Health Campus. Speakers included Washington County Emergency Manager, Doug Berglund; Healtheast Security Coordinator Dave Thomala; and District 6 ARES Emergency Coordinator Ann Foster. Each spoke of upcoming events for their organizations including any that would include ARES members. The MOU was renewed with Lake St. Croix Beach for flood response in coming years including 2014. The activation folder for the Washington County ARES unit was provided as an updated folder.
The first meeting of the year for MN Washington County ARES Members is scheduled for March 3rd tentatively at Woodwinds Hospital in the Administrative Conference Room. We will update and issue ID cards to those needing them. The MNWASHCOARES activation folder will be provided to those who still need them. Agenda topics will include: details on the Spring Deployment Drill, Build Day, Go Kit Picnic, and our plans for the October 4th SET drill. All members are encouraged to attend this first meeting of the year.
The December 15th MNWASHCOARES Net topic was getting feedback from participants on the years activities by Washington County ARES. This story reports the feedback received from net participants and is listed below. No items that were provided by more than one ARO are repeated. Comments received are as follows: 1. The net had a small turnout sometimes (once only 2 persons); we need more participants. 2. One net per month would be better (said by 4 members); easier to remember and better. 3. A fixed date is better than a fixed day. 4.
The 2013 SET was the best ever: the most participants, the largest distance covered, the most formal messages passed, the best digital message traffic, and more National Traffic System (NTS) traffic. 23 participants gathered in Washington County and extended as far as Pine County in the north to Goodhue County in the south. Both hf frequencies and 2 meter repeaters were used. Relay stations were necessary and effective. During the drill, traffic was passed across 120 miles of ether.
ARES members have chosen sites to staff and will communicate from those locations for the Simulated Emergency Test on Saturday, October 5th. The choice of a location is from a list of agencies with whom we have Memorandum's Of Understanding (MOU's).
The fall meeting of the MNWASHCOARES group will be held on Tuesday evening, September 17th, 6:30 PM at the Red Cross building in Bayport, MN. The primary agenda item will be he details of the Simulated Emergency Test (SET) to be held on Saturday, October 5 from 9 - 11 am. Participants can pick their assignment station for the drill. We will also provide ID cards for those who are still without theirs and there will be copies of the MNWASHCOARES Folder for those who have not yet received them.
Assistant Emergency Coordinators (AEC's) are meeting to prepare for the Simulated Emergency Test (SET) scheduled for the first weekend in October. ARES members will staff stations and simulated stations for shelters, EOC's, hospitals, and feeding vehicles. Plans are also in the works to work with the MN State EOC as part of the drill. Messages will also be entered into the National Traffic System to other parts of the nation via Amateur Radio.
The July 2013 edition of QST lists the 2012 Simulated Emergency Test Results. Washington County ARES is listed on page 71 under the Dakota Division, MN Section with a score of 240. This is a nice formal recognition of the hard work, time, and dedication of our members in training and preparing for emergency communications. Kudos to every member for your support of ARES and your hard work!